Judge: Can't serve legal paper on Facebook

June 13, 2012 at 6:01 PM

NEW YORK, June 13 (UPI) -- A U.S. judge has ruled that a bank cannot use Facebook to serve legal papers notifying someone they're being sued.

In a case involving a $1,243 credit card debt, Chase lawyers asked U.S. District Judge John Keenan in Manhattan if they could serve the legal papers against Nicole Fortunato through her Facebook account, since that was the only information they had about her whereabouts, Slashgear.com reported Tuesday.

Fortunato allegedly stole her mother's identity to get a credit card and ran up the charges.

Her mother, Lorri Fortunato, sued Chase, saying she never applied for the card and never authorized the charges.

She says she is estranged from her daughter, and doesn't know where she is. Chase officials said they've had no luck either, with the only "sighting" of her being her Facebook profile.

Chase lawyers said they wanted to serve her in an attempt to recover the charges through her Facebook account -- a practice that has been accepted in other countries -- but Keenan said no.

"Service by Facebook is unorthodox to say the least," he said, and "anyone can make a Facebook profile using real, fake or incomplete information."

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